SPOTLIGHT: ANGIE ADAMS FROM QUESTION EVERYTHING
The founder of the girlswear label takes us on her rock ‘n roll adventure
Here at Fussy Bird we are lucky enough to come across amazing mums doing amazing work, juggling work, kids, life, home and everything in between. And then Angie Adams was caught by our Spotlight radar and we were fascinated by her exciting and inspiring background (rock ‘n roll + three children + three careers = the ultimate #mumboss).
Having studied at the London School of Fashion, Angie began her career as a drummer for an all-girl rock band called Fluffy, touring with the likes of Iggy Pop, the Foo Fighters and the Sex Pistols. After her second child she switched lifestyle and, after gaining a degree, became a practising homeopath.
Following the birth of her third child, she launched her third career in children’s fashion line Question Everything. Established in 2012, Question Everything offers hand-smocked pieces, rompers and separates for ages 0-8 in modern and traditional prints. We love their classic but wearable designs (and have already made our wish list for the Christmas party season), and each piece is 100% cotton, hand made by artisans in Manila.
A percentage of every sale from Question Everything goes to Childhood Asia, a charity supporting street and working children in the Philippines, which just makes Angie even cooler. So how the heck does she fit all of this in? What drives her? Is she planning on career number four? What does she love? And can she please come to Fussy Bird HQ and do our eyeliner for us every morning? Here’s what we discovered…*
*We didn’t actually ask about the eyeliner. That would have been weird. But we wished we had.
I wake up at… 6.45am. The thought of coffee gets me out of bed. I love coffee! I get the kids up and ready for school, everyone out the door and on the school run. Mornings are a bit of a dash. I normally wear jeans, a jumper and cowboy boots unless I’m heading out to meetings, in which case I’ll wear a dress.
My typical day involves… After drop-off I head to my office at home to work for the day, unless I have meetings. My assistant and I go through the business of the day and discuss what our goals are for the day/week. Over the last few weeks we have been focusing on designing the Autumn/Winter ’17 collection, which looks fabulous! I’m so looking forward to the samples arriving ready for our trade shows In London and New York.
At around 5pm, it’s time for the kids to return from school, and after catching up with everyone I start preparing dinner. We all love Asian food so often I’ll cook something with rice or noodles.
After dinner everyone does their own thing for a while. If I have deadlines I’ll use this time to do some extra work. Sometimes the kids and I will watch a film. When the kids are in bed I’ll wind down with some reading or watch an episode of something if a series has caught my attention. Occasionally I’ll meet friends and go for dinner, a drink or to a gig. I used to be a musician, so I’m always keen to see bands playing. Music is one of my great loves!
I started Question Everything because…I’ve always loved clothes and fashion, and back in the ’80s, living in Manila, I’d buy fabric and go to the local tailor and have clothes made for myself – I was a big Madonna fan and I loved her style, so I would design and have my own clothes made in her style at the time – things I couldn’t get in the shops.
When I had kids, I would have dresses made for them on trips back to Manila, and on returning to London I’d receive so many compliments on them, so friends and family encouraged me to start my own children’s clothing business. I didn’t take much convincing! I had been wanting to do it for a while. I do love the process of having an image in your head and then eventually seeing it as you imagined.
My favourite part of my job is…I love designing the collections and have so much fun doing this. I also like to travel, so travelling to the Far East for production and to shows in the US and Europe is great! Building the brand has been hard work and continues to be, but it’s so rewarding. Every achievement makes me happy and makes it all worthwhile.
It also gives me a big kick to see children I don’t know out and about in a Question Everything dress. That’s a great feeling.
Worst part of my job… The daily running of a company involves a lot of admin. It’s quite time-consuming, so my assistant and I share the work between us to make sure there’s always time for the more fun, creative side of the business, which is what inspires me to keep working hard.
The biggest challenges of combining business with motherhood are…TIME. There’s never enough hours in a day to fit everything in!
Who I admire… The spiritual writer and speaker Marianne Williamson. Her books have really inspired me. She once said, ‘If you give your life as a wholehearted response to love, then love will wholeheartedly respond to you.’
I’m also a big fan of Sophia Amoruso, who set up Nasty Gal womenswear. Her book, #Girlboss, is a great read and, again, an inspiration. She’s a real success story.
‘Abandon anything about your life and habits that might be holding you back. Learn to create your own opportunities. Know that there is no finish line; fortune favors action’
And I couldn’t miss out Iggy Pop for making great groundbreaking music and for being so utterly cool and rock ‘n roll. ‘Music is life and life ain’t a business!’ is one of my favourite Iggy quotes.
FOR ME: I love dresses and collect them. One of my favourite designers is Coco Fennell. She makes beautiful and quirky dresses inspired by the ’50s,’60s and ’70s. I love vintage dresses and cowboy boots. I’m always on the lookout for good finds all over the world. I also love stars and tartan.
Another brand I’ve been following and collecting since the ’90s is a Japanese brand called Hysteric Glamour. They make great rock ‘n roll T-shirts.
On my wish list is a pair of Miu Miu boots, which are cowboy cut with cats on them. They sound a bit mad, but they are very cool!
FOR THEM: My kids are a bit older now, so they have their own style. My son likes Palace and my girls like Urban Outfitters and Topshop. They also like mixing it up with a bit of vintage and Dr Martens are popular all round.
When they were younger I liked buying No Added Sugar and Dandy Star for them and was always looking around for beautiful dresses – smocked dresses, too, of course! I generally like classic looks but with a modern twist – this is the basis of the Question Everything look.
At the weekend we…
At the weekend we like going out to the cinema or out for lunch or dinner – Japanese food or burgers are the popular choices with the kids. We love Wagamamas and Byron burger. Sometimes we have a movie marathon at home and make popcorn and get the blankets out.
What keeps me sane…
When I’m feeling exhausted, I like going for a massage. I also love yoga, which has been a big part of my life on and off, time allowing. It makes me feel peaceful and centred.
Good friends are priceless. A long chat with a friend and hearing an outside perspective on something always helps me when I’m feeling overwhelmed.
My guilty pleasure…
I love cake and a glass of wine. Hummingbird Bakery cupcakes always make me happy! And I hate to admit it, but when I need a little escape, I’ll happily enter the world of Made In Chelsea or Keeping Up With The Kardashians.